United States President Donald Trump on Thursday said his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Vietnam ended early with no deal following disagreement over sanctions imposed on Pyongyang, BBC reported.
This was the second summit that Trump and Kim held. The two leaders had met for the first time on June 12 in Singapore for a summit, following which Kim had committed to the “complete denuclearisation” of the Korean Peninsula.
On both days of the summit in Hanoi, Trump stressed the importance of maintaining good personal relations between the two leaders, The Guardian reported. Trump and Kim were scheduled to have lunch together and sign a joint agreement, but the schedule was abruptly changed.
“It was about the sanctions basically,” Trump told reporters at a press conference. “They wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety and we couldn’t do that....sometimes you have to walk, and this was just one of those times.”
Trump said Kim had offered to dismantle North Korea’s main nuclear facility at Yongbyon, but was not prepared to destroy other parts of the nuclear programme. However, the North Korean leader asked for the sanctions to be lifted, but the US did not agree.
“[Kim] wants to de-nuke, but he wants to just do areas that are less important than the areas that we want. We know the country very well, believe it or not, we know every inch of that country,” Trump said, according to CNBC.
Trump said there were no plans of holding a third summit. “This wasn’t a walk away like you get up and walk out. No, this was very friendly – we shook hands,” he added. “When we walked away, it was a very friendly walk.”
In December 2018, North Korea warned the US that new sanctions imposed by Washington could derail its plans to dismantle its nuclear programme. The month before, North Korea threatened to resume its nuclear programme if the US did not lift sanctions on the country. Later that month, Washington abruptly postponed high-level talks with Pyongyang.